Thursday, August 16, 2018

Badly Needed Change Gains Cross-Party Support

New Jersey State Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean released the following statement on today’s NJ Transit Legislative hearing and Gov. Murphy’s announcement regarding lifting residency requirements for “mission critical” NJ transit employees.
Senator Tom Kean comments on the Aug. 16, 2018 NJ Transit hearing and Gov. Murphy’s announcement regarding lifting residency requirements for NJ transit employees. (
“I appreciate the fact that NJ Transit Executive Director Kevin Corbett, the DOT Commissioner, and others were willing to come and testify before us today. It was refreshing to hear these officials acknowledge the pain and suffering our commuters are going through,” Senate Republican Leader Tom Kean (R-21) said.

“We know now, from multiple summers of hell, that one person taking an unplanned vacation day can shut down an entire train line. The staffing issues at NJ transit are extremely problematic. Individual choices are impacting thousands of lives.

“I am glad to see that Kevin Corbett and Governor Murphy agree with me, that we need to lift residency requirements and expand the pool of hires. This is a solution I have spent years advocating for. I hope that Legislative leaders will also consider expanding this effort to include all types of public employees, as I have proposed. There is no reason not to bring the best and brightest candidates to New Jersey. In the meantime, we need to pass this limited exemption immediately.

“Everyone knows the old saying, ‘we train them and they leave.’ We hear it from business owners all the time. Why not lift this rule and grab highly trained candidates from other states while we can? This is a crisis. Commuters need us to use every tool at our disposal to solve it.

“Executive Director Corbett is right – there is no magic wand of silver bullet, but there are certainly steps we can take right now to get this agency back to where it needs to be.

“We will continue to fight alongside each other, regardless of party, to make sure our commuters have a safe, reliable and accessible way to get to work on time.”

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